Group process in social group work

  1. Introduction.
  2. Group Process. 
  3. Interaction. 
  4. Cohesiveness.
  5. Conflict.
  6. Structuring 
  7. Leadership.
  8. Decision making.
  9. Norming of the group. 
  10. Social Control.
According to Toseland and Rivas (2001), the result from the interaction of the group members are often referred to as the process of the group or group dynamics. Despite several attempts have been made to define and classify the group process, none of the attempts are proved to be satisfactory. However, they have identified four processes that are deemed to have a vital part in understanding the group process the same are mentioned below.
  1. Communication and interaction pattern.
  2. Group Cohesion
  3. Group Control.
  4. Group Culture. 
In the quest of knowing the group process, someone will be definitely wondered to know that the earlier theorist of the group worker like H.B Trecker, Helen Northen and Konopka did not talk about the group process in their work at all. On the other hand, Ridgways (1983) listed out the group process in the work 'Dynamics of small groups. She has identified the following group process.
  1. Communication.
  2. Cohesiveness.
  3. Group Development. 
  4. Conformity. 
  5. Deviance. 
  6. Social  Control 
  7. Differentiation of the status
  8. Leadership.
  9. Group Culture.
Looking into the process discussed above one can see some similarities in the social group process given by different authors in a different period of time. However, the analysis of the group process could be different. It is certain that the process we study about interrelated and the overall functioning of the group. The following function or the event takes place in the group that may be known as the group process.
Interaction takes place when more than one person joins together. Interaction in a group is a natural phenomenon. In the context of working with the group, a prime concern is given to learning about the pattern of interaction. There are several factors that seemingly influence the interaction pattern are as follows.
  • The relationship among the members.
  • The sense of homogeneity among the members.
  • The group goals 
  • The style of leadership.
  • And the size of the group
It has been a sociological understanding that the larger the size of the group, the lesser is the interaction among its group members. Interaction in the smaller group tends to be easier and more intimate.
Communication has been one of the vital aspects of interaction among the group members. Group is significantly influenced when there is a quality of group communication. The communication process needs monitoring to ensure the smooth flow of information among members to create a healthy social environment. Communication is an instrument for both standardization and differentiation in the group. The nature of the communication pattern will also help the social structure in a group
Member willingness to be part of the group and stay on a group is known as the sens of group cohesiveness. Group s are not engaged in a specific definite activity to providing members any material helps still than group members are held together, these circumstances reflect a high level of bonding and cohesiveness. The factor which makes the group very cohesive is group norms. group culture, group goals, and group leader.
Conflict is part of any group process. Whenever more than one individual forms a group or works together, play together than conflict is inevitable. The factor of the conflict may differ, depending on the context of the group. The group conflict may take place between individual members, between members and group leader, and between members and subgroups. Most of the Author argues that the conflict usually takes place in the middle of the group stage which may be the performance of the group. Following are the few sources of group conflict
  1. Awareness of group norms 
  2. Miss information and miscommunication.
  3. Different opinion
  4. Cultural difference 
  5. Leadership Style.
The capacity to resolve or deal with the conflict is depending on the abilities of the group members.
Allocations of responsibility and roles among the members are understood as the Group Structuring. The structuring is carried out on the process of assessment of the members contribute to the group they belong to. All members in the group neither adequately similar in skills or experiences nor do they have a similar motivation for joining the group
The entire functioning of the group process governs and directed by the leader. The development of leadership significantly affects the development of the group. The group effectiveness is measured by the two factors. the emotional notion and the other one task orientation. There are leaders who are very task-oriented and some are happy to keep the team together. The emergence of social group leader depends on the ground of prior relationship, socio-economic background, affiliation, and achievement orientation.
Decision Making
The decision is the process of making or arriving at a decision. It is required to understand the process of decision-making and to analyze the product group functioning. The overall group performance is determined by the decision making process.
Norming the group
Norms are understood as shared expectation and a conviction about appropriate ways of behavior. Philosophical and cultural norms define the norms of the group. Group cultures represent the entire lifestyles of a group. Some group is intended to be more formal and some are very informal.
Social Control
The proper order is prerequisite essence of the social group. The group develops norms to regulates the behavior of the members of the groups. However, a system of control is inevitable. The written code of conduct is the formal rule of the group and when and the conduct of violation of the rules may demand a penalty for the same.
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